This week, my dad got bit in the face by a dog, my mom and sister hit a deer and totaled the car, and my mom lost a very meaningful necklace (we think it's probably somewhere at the Department of Motor Vehicles in Frazer, Pennsylvania). All that is to say, it's been kind of chaotic in the Williams household of late.
After the first and second not–great things happened, my dad picked me up from the train station and showed me the scar on his nose. Everyone was fine, he said; the dog had its shots and the deer hurt the car but not my mom and sister. But he just had to add an endnote: “You know, Annabelle, bad things happen in threes.” I wanted to shake him for having spoken that into existence.
But I couldn’t shake the anxiety of it, waiting for the bad thing to happen and wondering what it would be. Would I trip and fall and shatter my phone screen? Would my train back to Philadelphia get derailed? Would my sister break her wrist at basketball practice? Would it be even worse than I was picturing?
And then my mom lost the necklace. Her mother–in–law, my grandmother, had given it to my dad to give to my mom. In some ways, it was a sign of approval (even though she didn’t initially love her golden boy’s choice). That necklace means a lot to my mom, and if she loses it at the DMV—a place she already hates enough—she might never go back.
I spoke to my mom on the phone earlier tonight and told her, in the most soothing voice I could muster, that she’d probably left the necklace somewhere in the house, that my siblings could help her look for it, that it would be fine.
And I really think it will be, even if she doesn’t find the necklace. Sure, it’ll be sad. But that’s replaceable. What’s not replaceable is being at home for my sister’s surprise 16th birthday party, or teasing my brother across the dinner table.
I guess the moral of this letter is that I love my family. And that without them, I wouldn’t have the space that I sometimes need to decompress after a long week of Street, school, and everything in between. And even though we’ve had a bit of an unlucky week, things seem to be looking up.